We see it all the time… you’re desperate to study abroad, but you don’t know how to talk to your parents about it. With decisions on this scale, your parents must be on-board. After all, you’ll need a lot of support from them during this journey.
For your parents, this decision is just as big for them as it is for you. There will be lots for them to think about too. They will be worried, anxious, reluctant at first.
In this blog, we’ll show you what to prepare so that you can confidently talk to your parents about this decision.
Completing your research first is key since it will show that you’ve put a lot of thought into this concept of moving abroad and that you’re serious about studying overseas.
How do you think your parents would react if you told them you want to move across the world to study for 1-3 years if you haven’t even done any proper research?
The second part of this blog will be directly for your parents to read. We’ll explain the ins and outs of a study abroad journey, what they’ll need to do, what they should expect and how they can support you.
All of this combined will have your parents convinced that you’re making the right decision and will have them fully behind you and your overseas studies dream!
What to prepare for your big talk.
1. Choose your destination and try to be specific
Do some research about the country you want to study in, whether it’s the UK, Canada or the USA, do the research.
You’ll want to be able to give good reasons as to why you’ve chosen that country. It might be because you already have family there (big bonus), or that lots of students from your country are already studying there.
Then you’ll want to go one step further and narrow down some universities. This is where you may want to contact an overseas education consultant. Getting in contact with a consultant early is a great way to build up extra information about your chosen location. You can get a free online counselling session here!
They will be able to give you some study abroad options for free! This is usually based on your grades/predicted grades, finances and other preferences.
2. Explain how studying abroad will benefit you
Start with it from an academic point of view.
Why will a degree from overseas be more beneficial than a degree from your home country?
Is it because the UK has the best education in the world?
Is it because a specific university in Canada has a course that isn’t available in your country?
You’ll also want to come up with some other benefits that studying abroad will have.
Will it give you more confidence as a person?
It will certainly improve your language skills for example
And more importantly, how will it enhance your career prospects?
This is a big one. Will studying abroad help you get the job you always dreamed of? This will all depend on what your motivation behind studying abroad is. If it’s to learn software development and land a job at Google, this is a very strong argument. If it’s to gain some knowledge and understanding about business so that you can eventually take over the family business, this is another great point. Either way, any form of studying should have its benefits to your future career path.
3. Plan a budget
A big reason why your parents may be against you studying is abroad is the cost involved.
There are several things you need to prepare for here.
Firstly, how much will it cost in total (you need to think about the course fee and living expenses) and how will you fund it all. An overseas education agent will give you some guidance on how much it will cost to study in certain cities or countries, so reach out to get these answers.
You’ll then need to think about the funding aspect. Would your parents be prepared to fund this journey using their savings? Or would you be able to take an education loan in your home country? Think about scholarships too. You can download our FREE handy guide on how to win scholarships in 2021 here!
You’ll also need to plan a budget. Find out how much you’ll be spending on food/rent/bills/entertainment and work out how much you’ll budget for a year for all of these expenses.
Find out the visa rules around working part-time and look into this option too. Believe me, if you’ve researched all of this, your parents will know how serious you are about studying abroad. It’ll also help you massively when it comes to arriving at your destination and really being responsible when you’re living away.
The last thing you want to do is blow your budget in the first two weeks!
Check out our blog on the 5 cheapest UK universities for more information in this area
4. Staying in touch
Without being too soppy here, your parents will miss you when you’re gone, and you’ll probably miss them too.
But there are so many ways that you can stay in touch with your friends and family whilst you’re away studying.
Apart from the obvious ones such as WhatsApp, Skype and Zoom calls, there are other ways you can keep in touch and let your parents know what you’re up to. Try creating a new Instagram page dedicated to your study abroad journey, this can be where you share pictures for your parents to see.
You could even create a blog and post weekly on it. Your parents could log in and catch up with what you’re up to at any time. It’ll also be a good way for you to look back on these times later down the line!
5. The most important one - safety
Safety will be your parents biggest concern.
Alone in a new country, miles from home, your parents will feel helpless. But they shouldn’t. There is SO much support out there for international students and it’s simply a case of letting your parents know about this.
Every University will have an international student support team. They can help you with any problem you may have. There will also be access to healthcare should you need it.
In some countries, like the UK, it’s compulsory that you sign up to the local hospital and your university will show you exactly how to do this.
There are also companies out there that can offer ‘safety packages’ at a cost. This way, your parents will have true peace of mind. We’ll explore this in more detail in Part 2 of this blog.
Most reasons for not studying abroad could be countered with sound logical reasons. The aim is not to argue to defy your parents, but to educate them around studying abroad and its benefits.
Speak to us, we’ll help you with the above but also make sure you do your own research and really show your parents this is something you’ve thought about and passionate about.
If you have any other questions or comments please feel free to leave them below and we’ll get back to you.